Children with more stressful life experiences have a greater likelihood of suffering from academic problems: Ratio of the share of kindergartners with three or more frightening or threatening childhood experiences to the share of kindergartners with no such childhood experiences who have the condition
|Unable to name letters||2.4|
|Unable to understand a story that is read to them||2.1|
|Unable to understand the conventions of print||1.9|
|Below average math skills||1.8|
|Below average reading skills||1.7|
|Unable to read simple books independently||1.5|
Notes: Data are based on a study sample of 1,007 children who were born between 1998 and 2000 and were age 5 at the time these data were collected (2003–2005).
Data are based on a study sample of 1,007 children who were born between 1998 and 2000 and were age 5 at the time these data were collected (2003–2005). The study data cannot be used to determine whether the poorer outcomes resulted from exposure to frightening or threatening experiences, or from other conditions connected with low socioeconomic status. However, in this study, comparisons were made across children who were similar in age, gender, race, maternal education, parent relationship status, and household income—so there is a suggestion of causality. Children who had been exposed to three or more frightening or threatening experiences were compared with children who had had no frightening or threatening life experiences. Frightening or threatening experiences include physical abuse, sexual abuse, psychological abuse, neglect, living with someone with substance abuse problems or mental illness, seeing their caregiver treated violently, or having a parent incarcerated.
Source: Manuel E. Jimenez et al., “Adverse Experiences in Early Childhood and Kindergarten Outcomes,” Pediatrics 137, no. 2 (2016), 1–10, https://doi.org/10.1542/peds.2015-1839, Tables 3 and 4